Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the US, and India accounted for about 50.8 million diabetes patients last year — the largest of the 285 million diabetics in the world. Says consultant diabetologist S Nallaperumal, “One of the main factors responsible for the increase in cases of diabetes is the sedentary lifestyle that people follow these days.” Here are a few lifestyle modifications to improve the quality of life of young diabetics:
Watch your diet: “Eat what you require rather than what you desire,” advises Dr Nallaperumal, “The traditional eating behaviour is the best; follow a natural diet which excludes sugar, processed carbohydrates, wheat and hydrogenated fats. Include whole grain cereals and vegetables to increase fibre intake. Avoid fried food at all costs.”
Exercise: If anybody should exercise, it’s men and women with diabetes! “Walking is the simplest and best form of working out,” he says, “Gymming is also helpful but consult with your doctors before plunging into it.”
Watch your weight: Never begin a weight loss diet on your own if you are a diabetic. Discuss the options with your doctor. “Weight loss is a challenge, but the benefits of losing the weight far outweigh the alternative of living the rest of your life with diabetes,” he remarks.